To Her Master, In Defiance of the Bedroom – A Response to Donne’s To His Mistress Going to Bed

portrait by Isaac Oliver
portrait by Isaac Oliver

Be silent, be still, sir, and let me lie
To me your lover’s sigh
Is a pea under my pillow.
I am now as I will tomorrow,
Or, lord, does sunset mean sunrise?
The chapel is shut through beggar’s tries
To pry the ivory gilded doors
Stay, sir, those hungry rovers poor
And keep your lips to bedtime prayer
(If you die tonight its outside my lair!)
By light you have communion dinner
And that’s when the priest is a sinner.
Please, for now rest the cock till the crow
By light dewy flowers will bud and grow
Why now, when the day is done
And the quaint chapels rest as the sun
And halting sharp yawns my altar adorn?
Save your own self, you impish love lorn!
Your slobbery beggar needs wait day
When preachers and parish give charity sway.
Are you moldy Lazarus,
Who cried for sweet healing Jesus?
And am I he, your lady, your saviour?
My voice can’t make the stones tremour
Or my touch dispel the smelly grave.
Lazarus in hell three days was brave!
Sir, for now I redeem my chastity
And preach it against this depravity.
Goodly sweet sir, it is too much!
Let a lady rest,
And tomorrow you’ll be blest.

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1 thought on “To Her Master, In Defiance of the Bedroom – A Response to Donne’s To His Mistress Going to Bed”

  1. Awesome poem. I like your rendition of Donne’s style and language and how that kind of addresses the listener as if this were written as a contemporaneous, parallel mindset to Donne.

    Beauty piece.

    Like

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